Wallaroos head coach Jay Tregonning has named his side for Australia’s final Rugby World Cup pool match against Wales, this Saturday in Whangarei.
Hooker Tania Naden has been called up to the bench and is in line to make her debut, replacing Ashley Marsters in the squad after World Rugby handed down a suspension following the victory against Scotland.
Tighthead prop Bridie O’Gorman will re-join the starting front row, replacing Eva Karpani, who moves back to the reserves.
Michaela Leonard also returns to the starting side in the second row, alongside Atasi Lafai.
Wallaroos mainstays Emily Chancellor and captain Shannon Parry remain as the team’s two flankers, while Grace Hamilton maintains her position at number eight.
“We were thrilled to get the win against Scotland over the weekend, but it hasn’t changed our approach to training,” Parry said.
“Our focus has remained on improving our discipline, and we’ve upheld last week’s theme of ‘whatever it takes’.
“Now we’ve had a taste of victory, the girls are hungry for more, and we’re eager for this weekend’s challenge.”
Scrum-half Iliseva Batibasaga and fly-half Arabella McKenzie have secured their positions in the starting XV for the third week in a row.
Ivania Wong replaces last week’s debutante, Maya Stewart, and joins powerhouse Bienne Terita on the wing.
19-year-old Terita – who has now scored five tries in just three matches for the Wallaroos – is joined by fellow Australian Rugby Sevens injection, Sharni Williams, who again partners Georgina Friedrichs in the centres.
Fullback Lori Cramer rounds out the starting side for the Wallaroos.
“The coaching staff and I have been impressed by Tania Naden’s determination during our time at the Rugby World Cup,” Tregonning said.
“Every direction, every adjustment we’ve suggested, she’s taken on board and actioned.
“Though we got the win last weekend, we left a lot of opportunities on the field, and that’s something we’re seeking to improve on this Saturday.”
The Wallaroos will sport their First Nations jerseys during their match against Wales.
The Australia v Wales Rugby World Cup game will kick off at 2:15pm NZDT (12:15pm AEDT) this Saturday, 22 October, at Northland Events Centre in Whangarei.
The match will be shown live, ad-free, and on-demand on Stan Sport.
Wallaroos team to play Wales at Northland Events Centre, Whangarei, on Saturday 22 October, 2:15pm NZDT / 12:15PM AEDT
Liz Patu – Queensland Reds
Adiana Talakai – New South Wales Waratahs
Bridie O’Gorman – New South Wales Waratahs
Michaela Leonard – ACT Brumbies
Atasi Lafai – New South Wales Waratahs
Emily Chancellor – New South Wales Waratahs
Shannon Parry (C) – Queensland Reds
Grace Hamilton – New South Wales Waratahs
Iliseva Batibasaga – New South Wales Waratahs
Arabella McKenzie – New South Wales Waratahs
Ivania Wong – Queensland Reds
Sharni Williams – Australian Rugby Sevens
Georgina Friedrichs – New South Wales Waratahs
Bienne Terita – Australian Rugby Sevens
Lori Cramer – New South Wales Waratahs
Tania Naden – ACT Brumbies
Emily Robinson – New South Wales Waratahs
Eva Karpani – New South Wales Waratahs
Grace Kemp - ACT Brumbies
Piper Duck – New South Wales Waratahs
Layne Morgan – New South Wales Waratahs
Trilleen Pomare - Western Force
Pauline Piliae-Rasabale – New South Wales Waratahs